Community can solve the homeless crisis

To the Editor:

This is way overdue. An article in The Union Democrat on 12/21/17 featured Charley Burkett, 14, along with his friend Hunter Boucher, 12, presenting a Christmas wish and gift to a broken-hearted man out on the street. They were escorted by adoptive mother Karen Burkett and “nana” Dawn Cash. Kudos to all of you for reaching out to the less fortunate with gloves, socks and beanies, plus a human touch.

On Jan. 6, The Union Democrat also featured an article from ATCAA regarding the number of the homeless in our area. Many are veterans who served in the military, and made the ultimate sacrifice to protect our country and offer the freedoms that we enjoy in this country. Many lived on the edge of financial security as many of us do. There are also many children who are homeless that deserve a better life.

It takes a whole community, to reach out to overcome the heartbreaking homeless crisis. One of the first steps we can take is when we encounter a homeless person. Make eye contact, smile and greet them. If possible, visit with them as Charley and his friend Hunter did. How would we feel if we had no place to live, were freezing cold, no warm clean clothes, no place to shower or have a warm meal, being shunned by society?

Churches can help. However, it is up to the whole community to help the homeless. On Jan. 13-15 The Union Democrat featured an article on the front page about the low barrier approach where local advocates envision a shelter in the city of Sonora where homeless people can come at night to get a meal and sleep safely. It is vital to the community to find a solution to this very serious situation of homelessness.

Fr. Verne and Ruth Walter


Freedom of religion

To the Editor:

Re: Letter “Trump was right,” Jan. 19

The writer states that one of the reasons Trump may have been right using the term ****hole countries is because they have a false religion. I feel that this statement epitomizes what many hard-core Trump supporters feel.

I would like to know what is the true religion. Does the writer feel that there should be a state true religion and, if so, what religion it should be?

I am sure the writer is very indignant that many Middle Eastern countries have Islam as a mandated state religion. I am sure he feels that he should be able to practice his religion in these countries. I would like to know what he feels is the difference between these countries and this country.

Neal Gittleman